I love city life. I don’t want to move upstate with mosquitos, ticks, snakes, and frogs. I do enjoy nature; we have beautiful parks in Manhattan.
I paint people, places, and things, but in my cityscapes, you won’t find people. I only paint the buildings, the trees, the sky, and light. It’s an idealized version of Manhattan. Mainly the East Village, the Lower East Side, and Chinatown—downtown is where I’ve lived for forty years. It’s my world. Welcome to it.
I have three windows looking south; I love the fire escapes, the bricks, the tenement buildings, and the church steeples that remind me of Rome. And from my bedroom window and the roof, I can see midtown—the majestic, glittery skyscrapers, the Empire State Building, the Chrysler Building. In that view I’m reminded of MGM musicals, ballet, and opera sets. I like my paintings loose and theatrical.
I don’t like cars or cabs. I walk around the city, so many of the views in my paintings are from below, looking up towards the sky. My paintings are spiritual landscapes. I paint in the nude in the morning when I wake up at 4:30 a.m.; it’s my morning meditation. I add glitter to give it the sparkle and buzz of Manhattan. It all twinkles. I love it here. People leave, but I stay and paint.
Gordon Robichaux and Karma galleries in New York will present simultaneous exhibitions of Tabboo's recent cityscape paintings in March 2022.
Rhapsody in Blue by Tabboo! is available through Maharam Digital Projects, an assemblage of large-scale wall installations created by esteemed artists, designers, illustrators, and photographers.